by Jennifer Poindexter
Are you in search of an herb that has various uses? Have you considered growing salad burnet? Salad burnet could be a great choice for your herb garden. It can be used in place of lettuce on sandwiches, is great for creating infused oils or vinegars, and can be used to freshen up a salad.
If this interests you, it’s time you learn how to grow and care for this plant. By caring for it properly, it should return for many years. Here’s what you must know to grow salad burnet in your garden.
Growing Conditions for Salad Burnet
Salad burnet is a perennial herb which also belongs to the rose family. When the plant is mature it should reach between one and two feet in height. Take the plant’s height into consideration when choosing where it would best fit into your herb garden or landscaping.
Once you know where the plant’s height will work for your garden, it’s time to ensure specific growing conditions are met. Salad burnet must be planted in an area with well-draining soil. This ensures the plant receives water but isn’t left in a soggy state. It should also be grown in partial to full sunlight. The herb can thrive in planting zones 4 through 8.
However, the plant serves as an evergreen in planting zones seven and eight due to the warmer climate. If you can provide the right growing space for this herb, it should thrive under your care.
How to Plant Salad Burnet
Salad burnet must be planted under ideal conditions to protect the plant in its earliest stages. If you’d like to start the plant indoors, start the seeds one month prior to the final frost date.
Place the seeds in a grow tray. Plant them ⅛ of an inch deep beneath the soil. Spray the soil with a water bottle to keep it consistently moist until germination occurs.
It’s also a good idea to place plastic wrap over the tray. This creates a greenhouse effect. Once the seeds germinate, remove the plastic, and place them where they’ll receive adequate lighting until all threat of frost is over.
After all frost is over, it’s time to transplant the herb in its permanent growing space. Follow the growing conditions, mentioned above, and leave one foot of space between each plant.
You can also direct sow your seeds at this time. Place them ⅛ of an inch into the soil and plant each seed with one foot of space between them.
Whether transplanting or direct sowing, ensure there is approximately two feet between each row to ensure the plants have room to grow.
Salad burnet is a mounding plant and needs room to expand. After your plant is placed in its permanent growing space, it should begin establishing a strong root system and maturing.
This is when you must know how to care for the plant properly to ensure it produces an abundant harvest.
Caring for Salad Burnet
Salad burnet is an easy plant to care for. It requires only a few things, from the gardener, to thrive. Provide these few necessities to your plant, and it should do well.
The first thing salad burnet needs from you is water. It’s best to deep water this herb to encourage strong roots.
When using the deep watering method, you’ll apply water for a longer period of time. This will allow you to water fewer days of the week.
As the water is applied, it reaches the roots during the initial watering session. Yet, it still provides moisture to the surrounding area.
Over time, the plant will dig deeper into the soil to find more water. This strengthens your plant and equates to less work for you.
It’s a good idea to mulch around salad burnet. Mulch helps the soil retain moisture and discourages weeds from growing in your garden area.
The next thing salad burnet needs from you is fertilizer. During the time of year, when salad burnet is producing, it should be fertilized once every six weeks.
During planting, and each spring, add a fresh application of compost to your plant to provide any nutrients the soil might be missing.
The only other thing you must do to care for salad burnet is remove its blooms. When any plant forms flowers, it’s to produce seed.
Salad burnet will form blooms, and if left alone, will eventually form seed. This will leave the plant tough and woody.
By removing the blooms, prior to going to seed, you trick the plant into thinking it’s young again. Therefore, keeping it vibrant and producing for a longer period of time.
These are the only things salad burnet needs from the gardener. Provide these items, and your plant should do well in your growing space.
Garden Pests and Diseases Which Impact Salad Burnet
Does salad burnet sound too good to be true? It isn’t. In fact, this plant is about to get even easier for you to grow.
Many plants have numerous threats when growing in a garden space. They get munched on by pests and devoured by diseases.
Salad burnet isn’t one of these plants. The only issues most gardeners see are fungal diseases and slugs or snails.
Fungal diseases can be common in mounding plants. They’re compact and tend to lack airflow. Therefore, ensure the plant has proper spacing all the way around it.
If you notice signs of fungal disease, reduce the amount of water being applied to the plant, ensure there’s proper airflow around the plant, and make sure the soil is draining adequately.
It’s okay to lightly prune salad burnet to increase airflow. You may also apply a fungicide to help your plant rebound from such an issue.
If slugs or snails have found your salad burnet, apply diatomaceous earth around the base of the plant and mix it with coffee grounds.
The diatomaceous earth will form a hazardous terrain for the pests to crawl over, and the caffeine in the coffee will deter future visitors as most slugs and snails don’t like caffeine.
Watch for these few issues, and your salad burnet should make it to harvest without any major hiccups.
How to Harvest Salad Burnet
As with everything else involving this plant, salad burnet is easy to harvest as well. It can take up to 100 days for this herb to be ready for harvest.
However, once the salad burnet is four inches tall, it’s ready. Use scissors to cut the stems and foliage away from the plant.
Be mindful not to cut at the base of the plant. Leave a few inches to encourage the herb to regrow. You can harvest approximately ⅓ of the plant at a time.
It’s important to keep harvesting your salad burnet to keep the herb thinking it’s young. This should increase the size of your harvest each year.
After harvesting salad burnet, store it in your refrigerator to use it fresh in the near future. Hopefully this will help you get outside of the proverbial box when growing herbs.
Salad burnet isn’t what many would consider a common herb. Yet, it has many valuable uses and tastes amazing.
If you’re in the market for a different herb that’s also delicious, easy to grow, easy to care for, and easy to harvest, salad burnet deserves your attention.
Expand your culinary horizons by adding new herbs to your herb garden and landscape.